Milestone 8 Data 2009
Sarah and Sandra have begun blogging with Hatea Rangi School on the East Coast. Two students from each room are getting to know each other.
Her is a map of the geological boundries of ethese schools. We are looking forward to interacting and learning about living by the sea, out in the farmlands and in Cambridge Town. It is hoped that this might involves students learning a little Maori language as well.
(My three children are really enjoying the interaction - they are asking to be able to read the blog and check for comments and are keen to write their own news for the others to read. It's a good way to bring purposeful reading and writing into the classroom - especially for more reluctant readers and writers - and I can see real value in it. I am keen to continue this interaction next year. Sandra)





Sandra - Room 4 - Year 4 & 5 students
I have started a class blog as well. We are sharing snippets of what's happening at school and it's a good way for the students to practise their writing and keyboard skills as they take turns to write and gives the writing purpose. I'm hoping that it will become a way of interacting with parents - we're lucky that some parents have started to make comments already. We've also had comments from an ex-class ember who returned to Holland and Wendy Crow, our ex DP, who moved to tasmania. The children are keen to write on the blog and share their news and to read the blog and see what others have written. Have a look - http://dragonslaireast.blogspot.com/

We went to Xtreme Waste in Raglan in Term 3 and took our Easispeak microphone. Connor (yr 5) asked some of the workers at the facility questions. He also asked some of the parents about recycling.


Room 4 are in the process of creating animated nursery rhymes. In pairs the students chose a rhyme and have constructed a simple storyboard suitable for junior children. They have had to think carefully about what is suitable for young children - what font is easy to read and how big to make it, how much background detail and colour, how much animation and what speed, how fast to narrate the rhyme etc. All this would affect the final outcome and it had to match the purpose - that young children could learn the rhyme. We are hoping to get these finished in time to put them onto a CD and 'distribute' them later in the year.

Students are filling in a self-assessment rubric - how they used Key Competencies during this task. Responses like these are coming out:
Thinking - "We had to think about which font to use and how big to make it so that the junior children could read it."
Relating to Others - "I took turns with my buddy so we both shared the work."
Language, Symbols & Text - " We had to read the words clearly so that the children could hear them."

We used photos and Comic Life to record and write steps for instructions. The students had to choose their verbs and pictures carefully so that other people reading the instructions (buddy class) could follow them to do the activity.


French - a group of senior students - years 4, 5 & 6.
I also have a group of students who have been learning French. We practise speaking in French with students from other schools over the internet using Adobe Connect and a speaker phone on Fridays. The students enjoy the chance to speak to their peers and test their skills and knowledge.

One of the powerpoints I use.

The Room 4 children are helping to teach the Room 13 children some French - they made a chart to display in Room 13 so they could learn.


Sara - Room 14 - Year 2 & 3 students
As Pauline mentioned four students from Room 14 have been communicating with other students from Hatea-Rangi School, Pokuru School and Room 4 at Cambridge East through a shared blog. They have enjoyed taking photos and movies to introduce themselves and our school, as well as writing questions and answers to the other students. We are looking at developing a class blog for 2010.
A group of students have created a story book using Powerpoint and Paint. The students have created the illustrations in paint and then copied these into a Powerpoint where they have re-written a well known story and used the Easy-Speak microphone to narrate. They have enjoyed this process and have developed their writing, keyboard and mouse skills along the way.


Our classroom wikispace is back up and running after a few technical issues and the students are using this at school and at home. Parents are keen for their children to use the different links on the wiki as a homework/practice activity. http://eastroom14.wikispaces.com
We have been using lots of different graphic organisers and thinking tools e.g. The Thinking Keys
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Jenny - Room 13 - Year 3 students
A group of Room 13 students created a story about a spider who came to school and they shared it with other classes. They took photos and recorded voice to tell the story about the spider's adventures at school. Unfortunately the PowerPoint is too large to load on to this page but here is a slide to show you a sample. This powerpoint is on our school server for other classes to look at.

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Jenny has used various graphic organisers and thinking tools to expand and enhance students' thinking.


Linda & Dianne - Rooms 8 & 9 - Year 1 & 2 students
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Students are using a self-monitoring system to check their progress in writing. They have writing goals on the wall (these are taken from needs identified from writing samples - in this case structure) and have their photos next to the goal they are working on. Dianne and Linda say that the visual representation makes a real impact on the students' learning - students know their goal/where they are at and can chart their progress as they achieve the identified goals. There are other learning goals around the classrooms as well - learning about sentences - what the punctuation is and how to use it, how to use the hats to clarify thinking.
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This is a current inquiry about plants. The students started with what they knew about plants and then went out and took photos of plants around the garden. They used the photos to make a chart to show proof of their knowledge - along the top were the things they knew - leaves, flowers, etc - and they drew smiley faces to show whether the plants had the criteria they had thought up. The are now thinking up questions about plants to ask when they go a local plant shop - Amber Nurseries and will use the information gathered when they return.
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Children took photos of each other with a favourite toy during book week and then they used the photo of themselves to write a description. There was real descriptive language used - lots of detail - when they could see the actual photo and these were published and glued into their portfolios for parents to read.


Maree - Room 10 - Year 1 students
Room 10 created travel diaries and posted them. They sent them to families and friends around the world and have been documenting where their diaries have been, what 'adventures' they have had and it has made for a lot of interesting learning opportunities. Maree got this idea from Learning@School earlier in the year.
More pictures of the postcards and information is available on their class wiki - http://eastroom10.wikispaces.com/

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CamEast TV - Senior students - Years 5 & 6 from across the school.
This year Rayleen, Barry and Judith started up CamEast TV. Rayleen got this idea from Learning@School and was keen to trial it here so when Pauline asked if someone at our school would give it a go the answer was a yes! Pauline set it up and got the ball rolling. She worked with a group of students initially, setting up the Communicator 3 program and teaching the students how to use it to make the pilot programme. It has grown considerably since that
first pilot in Term 2.The number of students who have worked on the CamEast TV has multiplied to about 45 now - training more students to take over when the Year 6s leave, training each person for a number of skills and having input from other classes in the school as well.
The show is screened every fortnight at assembly and is a highlight for the whole school and the visiting parents as well. The group responsible for putting the show together presents it and students from other classes love to see themselves up on screen during their particular part of the show.

Students are positive that being a part of the making of the show has enhanced many of their literacy and numeracy skills and has also developed them in the key competencies. Here are some of their reflections:
Clare

There is a really positive atmosphere when filming and the discussions between 'workers' is wonderful - full of confidence and all task related - who's doing what, what's coming up, what problems are being solved etc.

When they are working with younger students Rayleen has noticed the respect between the older and younger students and the development of really positive relationships throughout the school.
We look forward to seeing the continued growth next year.
There is a screening of the last week's show on the school website for all of the community to see:
http://cambridgeeast.spikeatschool.co.nz/page/1-welcome-to-cambridge-east-school - click the link on the side.
Further samples are avaliable at http://goodtogreatalso@blogspot.com